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## kiwifidget

1940 posts

Uber Geek

#195666 29-Apr-2016 08:16

This is a question that is on the Police Numeracy Assessment.

I don't understand it and neither does the MOTH, who is usually very good at these things. I do the spelling and he does the maths.

He did actually get the right answer but then couldn't explain how he got it and the more he explained the more confused we both got and eventually he conceded that he got it right by mistake.

Here is the question:

"5/3 is to 1/5 what 5 is to what?"

If anyone could explain how to work this out we would both be very grateful.

Life is too short to remove USB safely.

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## Geektastic

14694 posts

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#1543807 29-Apr-2016 08:24

To be honest, the question is so badly written it's hard to determine what it actually means. Are you sure you have transcribed all of it?

9795 posts

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## Inphinity

2572 posts

Uber Geek

#1543809 29-Apr-2016 08:25

I assume it's a proportional formula, so in theory...

(5/3)/(1/5)=5/x

(5/3)x=(1/5)*5

(5/3)x=1

x=1/(5/3)

x=3/5

## kiwifidget

1940 posts

Uber Geek

#1543810 29-Apr-2016 08:28

Geektastic:

To be honest, the question is so badly written it's hard to determine what it actually means. Are you sure you have transcribed all of it?

We suspect this is the case, and that is the question in its entirety.

The answer is 1, but how?

Life is too short to remove USB safely.

## Geektastic

14694 posts

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#1543815 29-Apr-2016 08:33

To be honest I have yet to meet the average Plod who would be likely to know this one!

## Geektastic

14694 posts

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#1543816 29-Apr-2016 08:35

Jase2985:

However this states the problem as

"5/3 is to 1/5 as 5 is to what?"

Which is not what the OP says the question is.

## kiwifidget

1940 posts

Uber Geek

#1543818 29-Apr-2016 08:36

Geektastic:

To be honest I have yet to meet the average Plod who would be likely to know this one!

Ergo, the answer must be simpler than it looks.

Life is too short to remove USB safely.

## Jase2985

9795 posts

Uber Geek

#1543821 29-Apr-2016 08:41

Geektastic:

However this states the problem as

"5/3 is to 1/5 as 5 is to what?"

Which is not what the OP says the question is.

5/3 is to 1/5 as 5 is to what?

vs

5/3 is to 1/5 what 5 is to what?

I don't know about you but that seems to say/imply the same thing to me

## frankv

3828 posts

Uber Geek

#1543854 29-Apr-2016 09:36

There's a Police Numeracy Assessment?

I've always believed that there was no intelligence test to join the NZ Police.

The fact that the "correct" answer is given as 1 as opposed to 3/5 suggests that the situation is far worse... the Police apparently seek to avoid hiring people with numeracy skills. Perhaps this reduces Police payroll costs?

## Geektastic

14694 posts

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#1543857 29-Apr-2016 09:40

frankv:

There's a Police Numeracy Assessment?

I've always believed that there was no intelligence test to join the NZ Police.

The fact that the "correct" answer is given as 1 as opposed to 3/5 suggests that the situation is far worse... the Police apparently seek to avoid hiring people with numeracy skills. Perhaps this reduces Police payroll costs?

I cannot see a way to arrive at the answer 1, can you?

## SepticSceptic

1843 posts

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#1543862 29-Apr-2016 09:49

Grammatically and mathematically incorrect ....

My thoughts are no longer my own and is probably representative of our media-controlled government

## trig42

Banana?
5005 posts

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Subscriber

#1543867 29-Apr-2016 09:58

Weatherbeaten:

I agree that it is a poorly written question, but I did get 1.

Changing both fractions to a common denominator to make it easier to compare gives us:

25/15 and 3/15

As someone above said, I’m assuming the question is inferring a proportional relationship, and we can see that 25/15 is 5 times the value of 3/15.

So we are looking for an answer that is 1/5 of the value of 5 – i.e. the answer is 1.

Huh?? 25/15 is not Five times 3/15 (5 x 3/15 is 1, 25/15 is 1 2/3)

The original question makes no sense.

## Weatherbeaten

9 posts

Wannabe Geek

#1543869 29-Apr-2016 10:00

Yep sorry, just spotted that and deleted as you replied.  *headslap*

I've got nothing!  Inphinity's answer is the one I would have thought was correct.

## BigPipeNZ

1170 posts

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BigPipe

#1543874 29-Apr-2016 10:23

Ok,  I've seen these sort of question before but I think it's not well worded.

yuou can use the algebraic method above to solve it,  or (IMHO) a simpler fractional method.

"5/3 is to 1/5 what 5 is to what?"

It would make more sense if the first "what" is replaced with "as"

It's asking you to figure out the ratio relationship between 5/3 and 1/5 and then apply the same relationship to 5.

first you convert each fraction to lowest common denominator (which is 15)

(1/5)  /  (5/3)  =    (3/15)  / (25/15)

then simply cancel the denominators to get  3/25

so 1/5  is (3 x 25ths) of 5/3.

or    5/3  *   3/25 = 1/5

then multiply 5 by the same ratio to get

5  * (3/25) = 15/25 = 3/5

so:  5/3 is to 1/5  as   5 is to 3/5

bigpipe.co.nz

## trig42

Banana?
5005 posts

Uber Geek

Subscriber

#1543876 29-Apr-2016 10:33

Then how is the correct answer (according to the OP) 1?

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